Jun 27, 2016
Phrase Shift is a peaceful game that manages to tease the brain and calm it simultaneously. The gentle blue motif is inviting that way, and the simple implementation of extra colors can’t be faulted.
It comes in three difficulty levels, all aptly named: Easy, Medium and Difficult.
The concept is deceptively simple. Each level is a self-contained puzzle; the phrase is built on words made from individual letter boxes, and each word has its own line. The idea is to read and comprehend the puzzle phrase, figure out the single word solution, and then create said word vertically by sliding the consisting hind words till the word is created.
The trick, obviously, is in finding the right answer. One has to know what to look for, and the way the puzzles are set up generally precludes guessing except for the simplest phrase puzzles in the easiest mode. Knowing how to spell is definitely a plus as well, because completion of a level is the key to a subsequent one.
When the right answer is selected, the word is highlighted in yellow, and one can move onto the next puzzle, and so on. For answers that are not immediately obvious, one can use a hint button to highlight one correct letter, and from there, one can hopefully glean the right answer.
The different difficulty levels are appropriately stocked, too.
The brilliance of the game lies in the quality of the puzzles and the way the words are laid out. The phrases themselves are easy to understand, and, depending on the level one is playing in, not easy to guess. Conversely, it takes a bit of doing to select the right bank of hint words, such that they contain letters that eventually can be borrowed from to build the right answer.
It is interesting fare, really; the puzzles are creative, and have a crossword feel to them. While the game is a lot of the same, the game seems especially suited to furtive batch play, and can serve as a brain soother.
Not bad for a self-contained, premium-priced game.